San Luis Rey Fire: CHRB Urges Respiratory Vigilance, TSG Coordinates Distribution Of Funds

As horses displaced by the San Luis Rey fire began to resuming training at Del Mar on Sunday, the California Horse Racing Board released a memo urging horsemen to utilize caution with regard possible smoke inhalation. According to, the CHRB will require a two-stage respiratory exam for any horse to be allowed to race this week, as well as a signed statement from an attending veterinarian.

“We'll be very vigilant,” said California equine medical director Rick Arthur. “Some horses did get out early and may not have the exposure others have. We'll err on the side of the horse if there is any concern.”

Some trainers do not have enough equipment to return their horses to training, so according to, donations can be made to on behalf of the “San Luis Rey tack fund.”

The money donated to the fire's official GoFundMe page, which has risen above $500,000, will be distributed in its entirety, reported Santa Anita's vice president of marketing, Nate Newby.

“A lot of people have called us and asked, ‘Where is this money going?'” Newby said. “People are worried about taking care of you guys and your staff—the ones that got hurt, that would be the top priority of that group—and the horses. That's where 100% of that money is going to go to.

“Obviously we have people in the hospital. That's a top priority. The grooms who lost everything—that's a top priority.”

The equine death toll, announced on Saturday at 46, remained constant on Sunday. Two racehorses are still reported to be missing (Packin Heat and Sir Charmalot), as well as a small number of yearlings. It was also learned that the multiple stakes-winner California Diamond was one of the horses to have perished in the fire.

In support of industry efforts to provide relief to the victims of the catastrophic San Luis Rey Downs Fire, Barretts will donate 10% of the sales commissions of horses sold at the 2018 January Mixed Sale to the California Thoroughbred Horsemen's Foundation (CTHF), a non-profit
charitable foundation dedicated to improving the quality of life for backstretch workers at California racetracks and training centers.

The horses of all ages sale conducted January 17 at The Finish Line Sports Grill at Fairplex, Pomona, CA begins at 11:00 am PST. The day of the sale, live and silent auctions of donated 2018 stallion seasons, equine artwork and racing memorabilia are planned to raise additional funds. For more information, contact Barretts (, 909 629-3099).

The Quarter Horse Benevolent Charitable Foundation and Los Alamitos Race Course owner and CEO Dr. Edward Allred have each donated $25,000 and F. Jack Liebau, the vice president of the Los Alamitos Racing Association, has donated $10,000 for a total of $60,000 to the relief efforts for the tragic Lilac fire that swept through the San Luis Rey training center in Bonsall, Ca. on December 7.

The donations will be made to the California Thoroughbred Horsemen's Foundation, Inc., a non-profit foundation that presently assists over 5,000 California Horse Racing Board licensed backstretch workers and their families. Donations received by the CTHF will go directly to the victims most in need once it is determined where the most need lies. For others wishing to make donations, it is suggested they be channeled through CTHF. To do so visit

The Quarter Horse Benevolent Charitable Foundation was established years ago to serve the needs of the Quarter Horse backstretch community.

“When horsemen are in need of help, there is no distinction between Thoroughbred and Quarter Horse horsemen,'' said Dominic “Bud” Alessio, president of the Pacific Coast Quarter Horse Racing Association.

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